Friday, November 28, 2008

MSNBC Runs Canned "Doc Bloc" As Mumbai Burns

I was just looking for a few minutes at MSNBC. You know what they were reporting? Nothing, really. From 6-8PM, and who knows how much longer today, MSNBC had on its canned "Caught on Camera," with footage of events that happened years ago.

Over on CNN, Wolf Blizter in the Situation Room was doing a superb job of reporting on the Mumbai Massacre, with interviews of survivors, discussion of what this means for world security with former Secretary of Defense William Cohen and other terrorism experts, and detailed information on the heart-rending story of Brooklyn Rabbi Gabriel Holzberg and his wife, murdered along with three other Jewish people at the Chabad Lubavitch. His two-year old had escaped with their brave housekeeper. Canadian Jonathan Ehrlich, who managed to escape from another one of the terrorist targets, one of the attacked hotels, also gave a poignant interview on CNN.

Fox News did an ok job of reporting, as well, on the still ongoing September 11th for India - though I did spot a rerun of O'Reilly on Fox tonight.

But what can MSNBC have been thinking? They have wasted our time, and driven away viewers interested in real news, for years with their "doc-blocs". They had the good sense in the recently concluded coverage of the 2008 Presidential campaign to greatly expand their political coverage. But who at programming was asleep at the switch at MSNBC today?

MSNBC will never maintain a leading position as a cable news source, or even be taken seriously, if they put "Caught on Camera" or any doc-bloc programming ahead of covering ongoing world catastrophes.

Added December 1, 2008: Check out and join, if you like, the Facebook group I just created: Stop the Doc Bloc on MSNBC. Wield the power of new new media to change television!

See also similar sentiments by Lionel on Air America and David Zurawik at the Baltimore Sun.

Added December 29, 2009: See also Media Coverage and Government Response to Terrorism in the Christmas Skies and MSNBC criticized on coverage
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